On Dec. 3, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a partnership to further water quality trading. Their goal is to improve water quality through a market-driven approach that provides a cost-effective means for complying with Clean Water Act requirements. Trading allows regulated entities to purchase and use pollutant reduction credits generated by other sources in a watershed.

“New water quality trading markets hold incredible potential to benefit rural America by providing new income opportunities and enhancing conservation of water and wildlife habitat,” Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said. “Additionally, these efforts will strengthen businesses across the nation by providing a new pathway to comply with regulatory requirements.” Read the press release.